I'm so glad they've finally put 'Hey You' back on the tracklist. This was inexplicably missing on the original cd but present on the vinyl and cassette versions of the album. This for me was the last, great Cure work of art and for me it's right up there with Faith and Pornography as my 3 favourite Cure albums. The opening track is just phenomenal. A really long doom-laden guitar melody introduces Robert's most venomous vocals and lyrics to date. I absolutely love it, easily one of the best Cure tracks ever! This album is around 50% dark doomy Cure and the other half is more poppy but don't let that put you off because I think this album appeals more to the older 'true' Cure fans than those who like the newer poppier stuff post-Wish. Essential Cure!
on 22 February 2005
It can be hard to tell what the main theme is to this album. Love or death. On a lighter note, Robert Smith provides us with some superb, pop rock songs like "Just Like Heaven" and provides us with catchy dance beats to songs like "Hot Hot Hot!!!" displaying muscial genius along the way. On a darker side, Smith portrays the darker side of love with epic and truelly gothic tracks like "the kiss" and "the snakepit". The album plays out like a balanced argument displaying the joy and happiness of love and the pain and torture of rejection when i can not be found. This album is fantastic to buy because it suits two main moods; happiness and depresion. The only downside to the album is perhaps the quality of Robert Smith's vocals on certain songs where he is clearly lacking the quality heard in 1985's "The Head On The Door". Nevertheless, this album is perfect for anyone into pop/alternative rock or someone who wants to see what The Cure have to offer.
on 15 August 2006
By 1987 The Cure were in their stride, combining mainstream success with critic success, thanks mainly to the 36 minute "Head on The Door" album.
"Kiss Me (x3)", an 18 song extravaganza (well over an hour in length) is an amazing collection of dark and dour, but with those killer Cure hooks.
The singles were firm and bubbly ("Just Like Heaven" may just be the greatest Cure single of all time), but digging futher tracks like "Torture" and "One More Time" are just so excellent it makes the hairs on your body stand up.
The second disc is full of the compulsory demos and "live bootleg" tracks cuz most of the other material has found it's way out on various boxsets over the years. It's still amazing to hear the germination of the final product though.
This album is highly recommended!
Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me is one of my favorite Cure albums. It’s packed with great music and has a discernible atmosphere that distinguishes it from most other alternative music. The Cure was a big part of my teenaged years, and this music sounds as good today as it did back then. Just Like Heaven and Hot Hot Hot!!! are the two tracks most likely to be familiar to the uninitiated, the first song catching the group at one of their more mainstream (yet unique) moments and the latter proving that The Cure could appeal to a wider audience while remaining perfectly and distinctively themselves. My nod for best song on the album, though, would go to Why Can’t I Be You? which is actually quite upbeat and danceable (if you’re so inclined). This song is one of several that deliver a virtual cacophony of sound, including prominent horns against the familiar background sounds of the band. Catch, How Beautiful You Are, and The Perfect Girl have an infectious, ditty-like quality to them, breaking the music free from the clinging maudlin environment one expects to find front man Robert Smith in much of the time. Of course, melancholia exists among these tracks as well. If Only Tonight We Could Sleep is a slow, sentimental song which sounds wonderful until you get to One More Time, which outdoes it in poignancy. And then you get to A Thousand Hours; if ever a Cure song could be called beautiful, this is the one. Robert Smith says more in a few words than most singers do over the course of an entire album. When Smith sings “For how much longer can I howl into this wind, for how much longer can I cry like this?” I find myself quite moved every time; the vocals are raw and impassioned and seem to incorporate so much anxiety and angst into them that the overall effect is incredible. I don’t want you to think that the guys went soft on this album, though: Torture is a release of pent-up feelings, Shiver and Shake tells it like it is, and the final track Fight energizes each past, former, or future Cure addict to be who you are and who you want to be regardless of what others may think of you.
You may actually want to look for the tape rather than the CD of this particular album. While the CD is quite long, extending well over an hour, the tape contains one track not included on the CD: Hey You. It’s actually one of my favorite songs on the album, full of bounce and inspiration, even though it isn’t very long in duration. There is really more variety to be found on this album than on most other Cure releases, and I think this is the best selection with which to introduce today’s generation to the music we thirtysomethings indulged in during our youth. I would still have to name Disintegration as the group’s best album, but I really believe Kiss Me, Kiss Me, Kiss Me is their most appealing offering.
on 2 July 2002
This album caused quite a stir within the music media when it was released (1987). Just two years earlier The Cure had finally broken through as a major commercial act, following six years of trying their best not to, and the prospect of a double album (as was the form it's original vinyl release took) from these unexpected megastars got more than a few people quite excited.
All their expectations were fulfilled, the album containing 4 bona fide hit singles and 13 other classics, many of which could have been suitable choices for singles.
The album kicks off with The Kiss, a heavy wah-wah driven track - the full 6:17 of wild guitar (with few repeating phrases) being performed in one take by vocalist Robert Smith rather than guitarist Porl Thompson, which surprised many given Porl's reputation as the "solo" guitarist out of what was a 2-guitar line up (Smith and Thompson). After this, we move into Catch, a mediterranean style piece of pop which is acknowledged by most Cure fans as being one of their greatest singles.
The opening two tracks set the pace for the rest of the album really. The 17 songs pretty much go from rock/sort-of psychedelic to pop back to rock/sort-of psychedelic back to pop, and so on throughout the album.
This is a concept that the band employed years later for Wild Mood Swings (1996), however on that particular album it doesn't really work simply because most of the songs just aren't strong enough to carry it off.
On Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me it works brilliantly though.
Like I said, most of the songs could have been singles, and of the songs that couldn't (i.e. the rockier or sort-of psychedelic stuff) are all absolute classics as well, so there aren't any problems with mixing and matching styles. I think the main reason it works so well is because it was unexpected that they would do this, whereas with Wild Mood Swings they made quite a contrite effort to actively do the same thing, even suggesting in interviews that this was their goal.
A quick run through of the songs reveals rocky stuff such as The Kiss, Torture, All I Want, Shiver And Shake and Fight (heavily inspired by Led Zeppelin's Kashmir - blame Porl Thompson who went on to play with Page and Plant !!), the pure guitar pop of Catch, Why Can't I Be You, How Beautiful You Are, Just Like Heaven, Hot Hot Hot, The Perfect Girl, and psychedelic trancey stuff like One More Time, A Thousand Hours, The Snakepit, and the middle-eastern flavoured If Only Tonight We Could Sleep (very Kula Shaker - except about 10 years before they did it!!)
This is the album where Smith's lyrics really started to become extremely sharp and polished, and his lyrics have been some of the best in the world from this point onwards (although he sings way too much about relationships for my tastes - his subject matter is ocassionally a bit limited). His voice really started to take on a maturity in that his singing here is the best it had ever been up to this point, although he still manages to put on the weirdest interpretation of a soul singer on Hot Hot Hot (don't worry, it actually works - it's not as bad as it sounds, in fact it's quite good !)
This is an absolute classic album and at 17 songs in length (72 minutes running time) is a great value purchase that any self-respecting guitar music fan (of the indie/alternative variety of course) must have in his or her collection.
I cannot recommend this album any higher.
on 9 November 2000
This cure album is probably the best, at showing that the cure can write songs that range from the warmth and happiness of "just like heaven, to the darkness and despair of "All I Want". This proves that the Cure, unlike what most square headed "goths" think of them, offer a large pallete of sounds and feelings.
I have a thing about double-albums, perhaps it's the fact they're good value (not necessarily good) or the band gets to cut loose in an experimental fashion. 1987 was a bumper year for double-albums- Kiss Me... sat well next to Prince's Sign'O'The Times & Husker Du's Warehouse (Songs & Stories). Recorded in France, this was the most 'band'-created Cure album- various members co-writing the music. It takes in most sounds of The Cure- most notably the deranged pop they had been making since 1982's Let's Go to Bed & the bleak-guitar heavy work of Pornography.
The Kiss is a brilliant opening track, a guitar overload that advances on earlier tracks like Shake Dog Shake & The Figurhead- other tracks are similar to this: the claustrophobic Snakepit (a more abstract Pornography) & the anti-Tolhurst diatribe of Shiver & Shake- a more tuneful take on 1984's Give Me It.
There are wild experiments, with a hint of world music on such songs as If Only Tonight We Could Sleep & Like Cockatoos; though much is the classic alternative sound- songs like Torture, All I Want (A Night Like This II?)& Fight cut from the same cloth as Psychedlic Furs' Midnight to Midnight album. But it's the pop songs that really stand out- Catch is one of Smith's most gorgeous moments, as songs like How Beautiful You Are, Just Like Heaven (In Between Days II, covered by Dinosaur Jr), The Perfect Girl & A 1000 Hours are wonderful.
There are a few duds- Hey You is dropped from this edition (fine- it's a screaming b-side & not as good as other b's of this era- such as A Japanese Dream (played on The Kissing Tour) & Snow in Summer). Why Can't I Be You? is a rewrite of The Lovecats which sounds really cheesy away from the hilarious 5 Star pastiche video, Icing Sugar is another dud- just a bit of a non-event. Still, I'm just being picky...
Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me is a great example of the invention of Robert Smith & Co- perhaps it's a schizophrenic affair, then again that's probably what I like about it. This single disc collection is great value- though I think the album isn't quite in the same territory as albums such as Pornography, Disintegration & Wish- the latter being a refined relative of this. Compare also to 96's career-low Wild Mood Swings, that attempts to recapture the varied sound here- & fails.
A classic 80s album...
on 8 December 2007
From the pop of 'Why Can't I Be You' to the romantic 'Catch', through the dramatic 'Fight' this is the ultimate Cure album. There is not a bad track here, and shows the breadth of their talent. Great!
on 26 July 2014
The Cure's follow-up to 1985's 'The Head On The Door', sees them expand their sound & lyrical content. There are songs of doomy romanticism, obsessive love & pure venom. Long intro's abound, as Robert Smith allows the music to create its own atmosphere before he sings his songs of love & lust. There is also remarkably little filler for a double album. So, if you wish to purchase this fine album, here's what you can expect:-
1. The Kiss - Great opener, with a four minute assault of spiralling music before Smith cries out.
2. Catch - Short & poppy. One of three singles from the album.
3. Torture - A heavier track in which Smith's very skin is screaming out his torment!
4. If Only Tonight We Could Sleep - A beautiful song of Gothic splendour but with an Eastern flavour. A favourite.
5. & 6. Why Can't I Be You? & How Beautiful You Are... - Two up tempo tracks, with plenty of brass on the former.
7. The Snakepit - A more menacing vibe, as Smith writhes in the snakepit.
8. Hey You! - Short & delirious.
9. Just Like Heaven - With its chiming guitars, this has to be the archetypal Cure song. Should have gone higher in the charts.
10. & 11. All I Want & Hot Hot Hot!!! - Lust takes hold in these two tracks.
12. One More Time - A beautiful, slower paced song, with Smith pleading to be held. The music is glorious.
13. Like Cockatoos - Another wonderful song, with a tune that worms its way into your brain.
14. Icing Sugar - Great drums & bass on this one.
15. The Perfect Girl - Probably my least favourite but it's still a decent track.
16. A Thousand Hours - Smith howls into the wind just to feel his heart for a second.
17. Shiver & Shake - An urgent & angry number.
18. Fight - On the closing track, Smith urges us not to give in to despair but to put all the pain & hurt behind us & move on.
1985's 'The Head on the Door' & the following year's 'Standing on a Beach/Staring at the Sea'-compilation began to put The Cure on the path to stadium appeal. The Smith-Tolhurst-Gallup-Thompson-Williams line-up one of the key versions of The Cure (even if Tolhurst was a poor keyboard player!) featuring four prinicpal members who would be in the band up to the best-selling 'Wish' in 1992 (following which Thompson & Williams would bow out - the former has since rejoined, which is as well as he's the best guitarist the band ever had!). Following a headlining slot at Glastonbury and the 'Cure in Orange' concert, the band relocated to the South of France to record this double album. I'm sure Smith was picturing it as The Cure's 'Electric Ladyland' or 'White Album', while Thompson nodded to 'Physical Graffiti.' Essentially 'Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me', released in Spring 1987, was an expanded take on the eclectic directions of 'The Head on the Door', an album that seemed to sum up the different ways Smith went...
As with many double albums, it suffers by having some so-so material - though fans of box-set 'Join the Dots' will note some fine songs were banished to b-sides, e.g. 'Chain of Flowers', 'A Japanese Dream.' The album would be a lot sharper without 'Icing Sugar', the 'Night Like This'-retread 'All I Want', the obvious b-side 'Hey You!!!' (which wasn't on the prior cd version), or the irritating initial single 'Why Can't I Be You???' Smith had become more democratic with the songwriting, letting other members contribute whereas Cure albums from 'Seventeen Seconds' on had been very much his vision. Then again, hard to gripe when the results of this collaboration fuelled by masses of wine created such joys as the psychedelic wonder 'If Only Tonight We Could Sleep', the otherworldly 'Like Cockatoos' (a return to the territory of 'The Top'), or the single that should have been, 'How Beautiful You Are' - a song up there with such rococo Prince-joys as 'Raspberry Beret' & 'Starfish & Coffee' (1987 to me was one centred around double albums, 'Kiss Me...' and Prince's 'Sign'O'the Times', as well as the 'Substance 1987' compilation by New Order - perhaps this accounts for my eclectic taste?). Three of the four singles here were fantastic, 'Catch' as perfect a popsong as can be, 'Hot Hot Hot!!!' a blend of Chic & Talking Heads, & 'Just Like Heaven' a sequel to 'In Between Days' that nods to Rilkean angels and would be covered by Dinosaur Jr. and Katie Melua (...fortunately not at the same time!!!).
There are a few songs that suffer by having synths of the time, notably 'Fight' and 'Torture', which make you think of such average records from 1987 such as 'Midnight to Midnight' & 'Outland.' Smith & co still managed to emit classic dream pop songs, as well as the sublime 'Catch' there is the lovely 'The Perfect Girl', while the dreamy wonder of 'Disintegration' would be predicted by 'One More Time' and 'A Thousand Hours.' To cover all bases, Smith & co nod back to the darker, earlier work of The Cure - songs like 'The Kiss', the spiteful Tolhurst-gripe 'Shiver & Shake' and the epic dirge 'The Snakepit' could have been on 1982's bleak bilefest 'Pornography.'
This album signified The Cure meant business, several peers' recent releases (The Banshees' 'Tinderbox', The Furs' 'Midnight to Midnight', The Bunnymen's eponymous letdown, New Order's 'Brotherhood', The Mary Chain's 'Darklands', PIL's 'Happy?' & The Damned's 'Anything') paled against this, only The Smiths, who would shortly split up, seemed able to keep up. To be fair, New Order returned a year or so later with the best album of their career 'Technique', but not many could hold their own with this globally conquering version of The Cure. Next stop, 1989's bleak masterpiece 'Disintegration'!!!